Understanding the Facts About Dry Eyes

Photo of dry eyes Locate A DocHave you ever wondered what exactly causes dry eyes, or why they water despite a diagnosis of dryness? It requires a thorough analysis by an optometrist so that the affected individual knows whether the root of the problem is quality or quantity of tears.

In most cases, a diagnosis can not be traced back to just one cause. Instead, a number of factors come in to play. Environmental conditions, such as dry heat or being exposed to frequent high winds can both contribute. Hormonal changes, such as those that come with menopause, can also trigger symptoms. Aging itself is another factor.

The surface of the eye is covered in a layer of liquid called the tear film. That liquid provides protection, lubricates the surface of the eye, and stabilizes vision. If the quality of the tear film isn't high enough, it may be unable to perform those critical functions. Faulty tears may have abnormal proteins or irritating molecules. In a case like this, the individual may have enough tears, but not of a high enough quality. Other individuals affected by dry eyes don't produce enough tears, which means they have inadequate moisture. Fortunately, treatment is possible. Through lifestyle changes or the use of eye drops most people are able to keep their symptoms to a minimum. In the most serious of cases, surgery may be considered as an option.

To read more about dry eye condition and whether or not to see your local optometrist, check out our additional resources.